Having had an opportunity to test Sony STR-ZA3100ES vs Pioneer SC-LX501, I’d like to share my impression here to facilitate your choice of a new AV receiver.
AV receivers under review have the same number of channels. In terms of power, there are differences, the STR-ZA3100ES has such a ratio W/Ohm - 70/8 20Hz-20KHz, 90/6 1KHz, while the SC-LX501 has a power of 120/8 20Hz-20KHz, 180/6 1KHz. The value of total harmonic distortion is also different, and for the STR-ZA3100ES it is 0.09%, but for the SC-LX501 it is 0.08%. Each of the compared opponents supports Bi-amping. Both Sony STR-ZA3100ES and Pioneer SC-LX501 can transmit an audio signal directly to the amplifier and bypasses any DSP processing. Each of the receivers has a Bluetooth connector. The SC-LX501 has access to the Spotify service.
Support for the HDR function can only boast of each of the AV receivers. The quality of 4K 60p signal remains unchanged when transmitting from a source to a TV or projector via HDMI for both receivers. Signaling over HDMI in standby mode can provide the STR-ZA3100ES and the SC-LX501. Video scaling is only possible with the SC-LX501. Each of the participants of the comparison has a Dolby Vision.
The number of HDMI inputs/outputs varies depending on the receiver, the STR-ZA3100ES has 6/2, and the SC-LX501 has 7/2. HDMI Audio Return Channel is implemented in both devices. HDMI eARC is only supported by the STR-ZA3100ES. When comparing receivers, it becomes clear that each of the rivals can work with HDMI CEC. STR-ZA3100ES and SC-LX501 support the standard HDCP 2.2. In the presence of a built-in phono stage for connecting a vinyl player only at Pioneer SC-LX501.
Ability to create 2 Multi zones inherent in both AV receivers. Voice control of the basic functions of the receiver is not realized in both models. There is an ECO mode in neither AV receiver. The Sony STR-ZA3100ES and the Pioneer SC-LX501 can be properly configured using the setup assistant.
A Dolby Atmos multichannel audio format is available both models. A DTS:X surround technology is supported by devices from our comparison.
The Pioneer SC-LX501 is better receiver in this comparison. Check Pioneer SC-LX501 price